Book Review: Ozzie’s School of Management: Lessons from the Dugout, the Clubhouse and the Doghouse by Rick Morrissey

“Whatever Ozzie is now personality-wise comes from his inherent Ozzieness.  None of the people he played with and for could mold that.  There’s only one Say Anything Kid.”

-Rick Morrissey, Ozzie’s School of Management

When one thinks of successful management techniques, Ozzie Guilllen is not necessarily the first name that comes to mind.  While he brought a World Series to a city that hadn’t seen one in nearly a century, his fiery personality and routinely vulgar outbursts are not characteristics one generally associates with successful leadership.  In Ozzie’s School of Management: Lessons from the Dugout, the Clubhouse and the Doghouse, Rick Morrissey sets out to change all that or at least provide a little insight as to what makes Ozzie tick.

“He’s the Charles Barkley of baseball, but with a position of responsibility and authority.  There are different kinds of leaders.  And then there is Ozzie whose management style is more suited to a mosh pit than a boardroom.”

I’ve always liked Ozzie’s don’t-give-a-shit attitude which is why I jumped at the opportunity to review Morrissey’s book.  I should warn you that this book and the language within it are not for the faint of heart, as you might expect if you’ve ever caught any of Ozzie’s sound-bites over the years.  It’s no Richard Pryor routine but it runs a close second.  Like Doug Glanville says in his review on the cover “I would love to pass Guillen’s words to my young son, only problem is I have to wait until he is twenty-one.”

I attempted to count the number of times the word fuck in its many variations is used within the book but gave up after the first few chapters.  After all, Ozzie’s profanity is as much a part of him as his passion.  To eliminate the profanity just wouldn’t work.  Morrissey points out, “somewhere along the way, you come to realize his F-bombs are terms of endearment.”

“[John] Kruk took Ozzie under his wing in Reno, and if you were going to be under Kruk’s wing, you were going to swear.  This was and is baseball. So, yes, we have discovered the person who taught Guillen the many uses of the word fuck.  It’s like finding out who first put a paintbrush in Michelangelo’s hand.”

The author does his best to portray Ozzie as just that: a feisty, fiery, yet respected and unique character of the game, a manager that would do absolutely anything for his players as long as they give him effort in return, or in his words, if they “respect the game.”

Morrissey traces Guillen’s history as a player, his ups and downs with the Chicago White Sox, his rocky relationship with GM Kenny Williams and his eventual move to Miami, who the author claims the Marlins hired to “caffeinate a sleepy organization.”

Here are some more amusing Ozzie-isms.  It helps to read them in a thick, Latin accent for full effect.

On psychology: “When I was playing the game, nothing was mental.  All of a sudden, everything’s mental.  Attention deficit, I got problems.  I need to talk to a psychologist.  Bullshit.  That’s a bunch of shit.  That’s an excuse.  Why isn’t it mental when you go 4-for-4?  You got the same brains.”

On managing: “Managing is like fishing.  You put a hook on your line, you catch the fish, you let him go.  You do it again.  Back and forth, back and forth.  You let the players play.  When they don’t do the things they should be doing, you call them back and tell them.”

On his players: “Players know I love them.  They know I care about them.  Players know I’m going to be mad at them.  Why?  Because I’m a human being.”

On errors: “I’ve always had this philosophy that you are out there to make mistakes.  The only people that don’t make mistakes are the people not playing.”

On Sabermetrics: “The first thing I think about is how’s my guy throwing or how’s my guy hitting.  If my fucking guy’s hitting good, why the fuck am I going to bring in a pinch hitter?  You tell me he’s 0-for-20 against this particular pitcher.  Fuck that, I know my guy’s been hitting good lately.  I’ve been watching.  That’s the game.  It’s guts and hope.”

Morrissey paints Guillen as simple, proud, analytical, dedicated and real, yet also “impulsive, a known human irritant.”  If you’ve ever managed people, or run a business, Ozzie’s tactics and Morrissey’s account of them, if nothing else, provide an alternate perspective on the right, and sometimes wrong, way to deal with others.

If you are even in the slightest bit offended by profanity, then this book is not for you.  But if you’re a baseball fan who enjoys reading about one of the modern game’s unique characters, then I recommend giving Ozzie’s School of Management a shot.

Just wear your earmuffs.

34 thoughts on “Book Review: Ozzie’s School of Management: Lessons from the Dugout, the Clubhouse and the Doghouse by Rick Morrissey

  1. Pingback: Book Review: Ozzie’s School of Management: Lessons from the Dugout, the Clubhouse and the Doghouse by Rick Morrissey - BallHyped, MLB | BallHyped Sports Blogs

  2. I don’t have a problem with Ozzie’s language… His politics leave a mountain to be desired but that’s his thing too… What really chaps my ass is that he sprays spit everywhere when going off!

    Shut the spit up Ozzie!

  3. Chris, thanks for the review of what sounds like a great read. I like Ozzie because he so spirited. Perfect for baseball, perhaps not for the boardroom.

    I first witnessed the stream of profanity from major leaguers when, as a kid, I stood in the lower right field stands as I saw and heard Don Zimmer chastising Don Drysdale in the Dodgers’ bullpen before a game for not throwing hard enough.

    Before that episode, I had thought it grammatically impossible to include so many uses of the f-word in one sentence.

  4. Management guru Peter Drucker would be appalled by the tips penned by Ozzie .

    PSU’s team were embarrassed in their emotional season opener . Fitting way to start the season

    Alabama spanks Michigan , no surprise there ! FSU opens up a can of whup ##s .

    Good win (27-14) for the Gators over Bowling Green , albeit that at times they looked a little shaky . Driskell getting the start over Jacoby Brissett , it seems Muschamp doesn’t really trust the latter .

    Tophatal ………

  5. Al…

    I saw those 20 runs scored against the Sox and thought it was a misprint.

    From the moves they’ve made lately, it appears they’re going to entrust Valentine with whatever new roster they outfit. It’s how much time they give him after that is what’s in question.

    That Penn State loss could affect their entire season if they’re not careful. And Alabama embarrassing Michigan on national TV? That doesn’t bode well for all those who thought the Wolverines were a national championship contender.

    I didn’t get to see the Gators today as I was on the golf course. I hear they struggled early and struck some fear into the heart of many Gator fans who are worried about the state of the program.

  6. We could tell hat this book is worth the read just because it’s about Ozzie. Ozzie Guillen is a character and characters in the public eye get their books read. Look at Rex Ryan. Although, Ozzie’s management tactics don’t always work. Look at Miami now.

  7. Chris

    Those 20 runs come courtesy DIAL 1-800 CAN A WHUP A#S . GM Ben Cherington and the front office cannot continue with this bogus move that the blockbuster trade has solved that team’s problems .

    The Gators having eked out a win still looked bad . Too many missed opportunities . Jeff Driskell and Jacoby Brissett left a great deal to be desired . The 27-14 victory by the Gators , the margin of victory could have been far greater had they played with a great more efficiency .

    In some of these games , results were astounding . Some cases , I don’t know that many of these teams came to play , much less play any defense . Who the hell loses 84-0 ? Oh I know Oklahoma St in handing out that customary can of whup @ss to Savannah State . College Football remains a frigging joke and this is one of the many reasons why ! Big programs will continue to look for a whipping post , in order to push their case for a higher ranking rather than playing real quality opponents .

    Price pitched a gem today for the Rays but I believe it’s becoming almost foregone conclusion that they will miss out on a playoff berth !

    It may not be what we want but it is what we now have >


    Tophatal
    ……………………

  8. So now the only thing that’s stopping the referees from returning to officiate NFL games is the intransigence of the league hierarchy as they won’t come back off their offer concerning the 401K’s for the game officials .

    Noted NFL referee and lawyer Ed Hochuli and Arizona law Jones , Skelton , Hochuli & LLC are probably chomping at the bit to take a bite out of Goodell’s dumb a#s !

    Tophatal ………..

  9. Chris

    Our boy Money Mayweather blew $ 3 million betting on the Michigan vs Alabama game . He went with the under ………. say what !

    Courtesy of USA Today

    : Floyd Mayweather bet $3 million on Michigan (UPDATE)”>

    By Chris Chase , USA Today

    Floyd Mayweather will hope Michigan is hailing the victors in Saturday night’s mammoth matchup with Alabama.

    According to various reports, the boxer wagered more than $2.9 million in nine different Las Vegas sportsbooks on Michigan beating the 14-point spread against favored Alabama on Saturday night.

    The heavily-followed Twitter user @incarceratedbob was the first to report the information, which has since been confirmed regurgitated by other sources.

    Mayweather was guaranteed $32 million from his May bout with Miguel Cotto. He went to prison days later and ended up serving two months of a three-month sentence for domestic violence.

    The 35-year-old boxer has been known to make big wagers in the past, including winning bets on the Clippers in a regular season game ($1.9 million) and against Tim Tebow’s Denver Broncos in the AFC divisional playoffs ($1 million).

    “I’ve won a lot of money on games, I’ve lost a good piece of money on games,” Mayweather told MLive.com in April.

    ==================================

    Click on link to read in full .

    ==================================

    Perhaps the sooner Floyd gets back into the ring the more we might find him actually amenable and somewhat a redeemable character ? Your thoughts ? He should’ve thrown that $ 3 million my way , rather than pi##ing it away like that !

    Floyd may well know his way around a boxing ring but it’s obvious his #ss knows nothing about laying a wage on a football game .

  10. Al…

    Back when the Gators were making their run of basketball and football championships, I told fans to enjoy it because it would be a helluva long time before something like that happened again, if it ever did. Now they understand.

    Their next two games are on the road against conference opponents so we’ll soon see what they’re made of.

    David Price? He’s my pick for AL Cy Young winner and I think I’m pretty unbiased there.

    And I think Money May is just finding a way to become as broke as quickly as possible. What’s the over/under on that? he he

  11. The <a href="http://gatorzone.com/football/ Gators will be fine ! The issue at presenting is adopting Mushchamp’s message and style </v< . It takes time and after the years of success under Urban Meyer , the expectations of the fans still remain high .

    Money drops $3 million , the way that you or I would drop let’s say $200 on drinks at a club ? Or is that too high a figure for us both ?

    So the O’s are now chasing down the Yankees ? Who’d have thought six or eight weeks ago in terms of the AL East standings ?

    And even though the Rays are still playing great ball , they could now be left on the outside looking in by way of the wildcard standings .

    Tophatal

  12. Chris

    Here’s another reason why Drew Rosenhaus remains a piece of fecal matter . Click on link to read in full . I knew of this story several months ago but had been waiting for all the pieces to fall into place . It is now beginning to make so much sense as it relates to several of Rosenhaus’ clients and their latest financial woes,

    Prominent NFL agent Drew Rosenhaus scrutinized for relationship with former financial adviser

    MIAMI – The NFL Players Association is investigating the relationship between agent Drew Rosenhaus and a former financial adviser who persuaded a number of players to invest in a failed Alabama bingo casino, a source with knowledge of the inquiry told Yahoo! Sports.

    According to multiple sources who talked to Y! Sports on the record and for background, Rosenhaus and Jeff Rubin had an unusually close business relationship that spanned upwards of seven years. That relationship might have resulted in Rosenhaus breaching the fiduciary duties all agents who are certified by the NFLPA owe to their clients. The relationship has been scrutinized in part because of a series of issues surrounding Rubin, who is at the center of a bankruptcy filing for the failed casino that cost the players as much as $43.6 million.

    Starting in 2003, Rubin was questioned about financial transactions that could have raised red flags for a financial adviser, a five-month Y! Sports investigation has found. That included allegedly mismanaging a player’s game checks in 2003 and settling an issue related to allegedly falsified insurance documents in 2004.
    The NFLPA is looking into whether Rosenhaus should have paid closer attention and kept his clients away from Rubin, founder of Pro Sports Financial. Multiple sources, including free agent NFL wide receiver Terrell Owens, indicate Rosenhaus actively recruited players with Rubin and valued that association because it helped him increase his business. Although Rosenhaus specifically denied any relationship to the casino and there is no evidence to indicate he profited in any way from the project, his client base grew to more than 100 players during the seven years Rosenhaus and Rubin were associated. Rosenhaus currently represents about 140 players, more than any other agent in the NFL.
    If Rosenhaus is found to have violated NFLPA regulations on agent conduct, he could be subject to discipline by the union.
    According to two sports law specialists, including a lawyer who represented Rosenhaus, agents have a high standard of responsibility when it comes to a player’s off-the-field affairs.

    ===================================================
    Click on ink to read in full.

    ==================================================

    Let’s see how Rosenhaus will spin this ##it , much like he’ span any perceived involvement in the Canes’ scandal and his being granted unprecedented access to the program’s basketball and football players over the years.

    Tophatal …………….

  13. Timmy…

    If you’re a White Sox fan and want to know what really happened between he and Kenny Williams, or a Marlins fan and want to know what you’re getting yourself into, or just a baseball fan who just likes to read about dirt in the game, I’d recommend it for some fun, poolside reading.

  14. Al….

    The Gators will be fine? Are you sure about that? I’m not sure anyone within the Gainesville city limits is anywhere near as confident as you.

    Those money/club/bar tab figures sound about right, except when I drop that much at a club, I’m not looking to attract as much attention to myself as one Money Mayweather.

    Ya’ know? For once KP was right, he was just a year off. He said all last year that his Orioles were going to be decent. That team will just not go away. We’ll see what happens in the last month.

    And if the Rays don’t make the playoffs, which I still think they will, they can look squarely at their early-season defense and inconsistency at the plate.

    In addition to Price, I won’t be surprised if Fernando Rodney gets a few Cy Young votes… and he deserves them. For a team that can’t seem to win one-run ballgames, Rodney has been lights out for the most part of the season.

  15. Re: Rosenhaus, Al, that’s the best news I’ve heard all day.

    Whether it’s college or pro sports, agents are rarely if ever held accountable for their wrongdoing.

    I’ll drink to that news. NEXT QUESTION!

  16. Chris

    The reason I say that about the Gators has more to with that defense than anything else . They’re good but they have really been given the chance to prove themselves .

    If you can’t stand the heat , then stay the hell out of the kitchen . The Rays and O’s are cooking with more than grease under their skillets . Sh#t the Yankees are choking baby . And Jeter was saying in a recent postgame interview that they’re not worried ? They’re as worried as a schoolboy in a room full of Roman Catholic priests salivating as they look at their young prey and the victim just happens to be urinating on himself .

    Rodney and Price have been impressive over the last six weeks for the Rays .

    And tonight the Rays not only lowered the boom on the Yankees but can they dialed up 1-800 WHUP A#S again over their rivals the Bronx Brombers . And tonight once again , the Rays had the Yankees” number .

    The AL East now looks really interesting as well as the wildcard standings .

    Oh wow, another former former Gator player in trouble in the NFL ? No new is normally good news as they say unless it happens to a Gator . Joe Haden of the Browns fails a NFL drug test ——– mandatory four-game suspension . But they’re saying he’ll challenge the suspension . Say it ain’t so Joe ?

    Drew Rosenhaus is an amoral individual ! He’d sell the female members of his family into the sex trade if it meant he could make dollar or two ” . I mean , this is the same guy who was given carte-blanche and unprecedented access on the Canes’ campus to their basketball and football players . Yet Canes’ president Donna Shalala and AD Shawn Eichorst saw nothing wrong in that . The ” Haitian Massive” (N Miami drug dealers) were peeved at that because they weren’t allowed such a distinction . Dope dealin’ next to pimpin’ are two of the biggest rackets going on , on and at the Canes’ campus , if only anyone cared to dig deeper into what goes on there . .

    So are you saying , you’ve never dropped $200 in a night while out with your posse ? Shame on you …………. LOL,LOL,LOL !!! Bro’s before h#’s , man …………….. it’s part of the “man code ” !

    Hit me with your best shot

    It may not be what we want but it is what we now have

    Tophatal …………

  17. Al…

    The Gators will still need to score. Sure, their D is talented and will return a few pick sixes, but if the offense can’t keep them off the field for extended periods of time by controlling clock, they’ll get tired and discouraged.

    Another big win for the Rays. Dingers by Longo, BJ and Jennings, a solid start after a rough first inning by Cobb and late night lights out by Rodney. What we have atop the AL East is a logjam.

    Haden failed a drug test? I wonder if he’s still getting his weed from Gainesville. It’s gotta be better than the stuff they have up in Cleveland.

    Enough about Rosenhaus. He’s a waste of time. Did you happen to catch the first lady’s speech tonight? Inspirational and much more meaningful to talk about.

    And before we question Maddon’s tactics, let’s realize what he’s done with a team one-third the payroll of the heavy-hitters in the league… and that’s lead, compete, sell his message and get his teams to play meaningful games in October.

  18. Chris

    The Rays are cooking with grease and a whole lot more ! Now we’ll see what they’re capable of as they’re still set to meet both the O’s and Yankees over the remainder of their regular season which ends on the 3rd October . I don’t dispute Maddon’s tactics as borne by what he’s been able to achieve with the Rays since he assumed the role as manager , in 2006. There’s enough to suggest that he’ll be among the four favorites for the AL Manager of the Year Award alongside , Showalter , Melvin and Robin Ventura .

    Look I won’t have you talk bad about Rosenhaus without me railing on his a#s as well. He gives martial arts aficionados like myself a really bad name . LOL,LOL,LOL !!! Drew apparently holds a Black Belt in taekwondo . He’s meant to be a bad mutha-###ker , so I’m told . I’d like to go to to toe with him in an octagon or a dojo . I hope there’s a thorough investigation of this because there are some really disturbing allegations being made that led to several current and former NFL players having lost a sizable portion of their wealth because of the “alleged fraud” perpetrated . Then again if it’s the FBI or Justice Dept conducting this investigation , then this is liable to be botched as well as fu##ed up ! Those two governmental agencies are inept as FEMA and the SEC (Securities & Exchange Commission) .

    . Nothing wrong in Anne Romney or Michelle Obama being passionate in speaking about their respective spouses . The problem is , the public demands a great deal more from their elected officials , than platitudes and being eloquent on a dais . Not necessarily something that Mitt is actually capable of . As for his running mate Paul Ryan , he’s no more a budget hawk , than Rosie O’Donnell can be viewed as being a hot chic capable of being a Playboy pinup model . Ryan is the chair of the House Budget Committee , and he has done f##k all with that committee during his tenure . And Romney picked his ##s as a running mate ? Not that having Biden as VP , should be seen as an added bonus . LOL,LOL,LOL !!! I don’t want to be enslaved as my forefathers were not happy working on those plantations or being force to breed assets for their slave owners .

    Romney’s economic and jobs’ policy reads like Rick Scott’s wish for Florida ……….. nothing but hyperbole and delusional sentiment. And God forbid his (Romney) dumb a#s draws up a foreign policy worth s##t ! Hitting China with tariffs ? Should Chinese calls in those loans ……. and this country is f##ked , which it already is to begin with . That being said , Hillary Clinton Secy of State has been running around trying to put out fires all over the place and hasn’t achieved anything. Chastising Bashir al Assad of Syria, has been joke , while asking him to step down . What is it that she doesn’t understand about the Syrian President and the fact that he’s just as evil as his predecessor , his father , Hafeez al Assad ? That’s the problem with the US , the country’s foreign policy is solely based on economic advantages . But at the same they have this idiocy of aiding Israel financially to the tune of $ 8 billion annually ($8,000,000,000) while getting nothing in return , that’s tangible ,. other than Israel’s armament sales of which it’s US taxpayers’ monies being used to buy this weaponry . Perhaps the lobbying firm AIPAC can explain to us how it is that they have essentially been writing and directing US foreign policy for the last three decades ? You’re a Poli-Sci graduate , perhaps you can explain it to your patrons ?

    And these political analysts seem to forget that Israel has stolen and spied on the US , while gaining sensitive information , which no one wants to acknowledge . What a load of horse s##t !

    Change we can believe in …….. where ?

    As for the the Romney Ryan campaign , let’s see what comes out of it all .

    Tophatal ………….

  19. I like Ozzie. I think he’s good for baseball and a perfect fit in Miami. The problem was they tried to put together a contender by throwing money away on mismatched parts. The Marlins need to build a team and set Ozzie loose.

  20. Drew’s a blackbelt, huh? Let’s just say you versus him in the octagon is a match I’d pay top dollar to see.

    It could be the undercard for Obama-Romney is a game of 21.

  21. Bazza and Romney would debate not ###turbate but actually debate each other , rather than throw down . They’re both soft as butter .

    Bradon Weeden’s QB rating 5.1 at the end of the game against the Eagles a <b 5.1 ? Is that humanly possible in the NFL ?

    Not a 50.00 but a 5.0 ? Damn , Papi !

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